When my sons were little, they had issues with tomatoes. And beans. And cottage cheese.
If there was any hope that they'd eat a glob of mashed potatoes, I had to turn it into a clown's face.
I cajoled. I pleaded. I told them spinach would build their muscles and that carrots would make them see in the dark.
It was a struggle. Given a choice, they would have lived on peanut butter and hot dogs and Kool-Aid.
Acorn squash? Not a chance.
This, a friend and I agree, is a curious thing, given how their appetites have, well, developed over the years.
The friend and I have two things in common. We both have two grown sons. We also have refrigerators that tend to be frequently bare.
"It's bizarre," said the friend over lunch. "I'll go to Costco, buy $200 worth of groceries, and by the next day, the fridge will be empty."
I get the picture. That's because I also happen to live it.
"I know," I say, "I'll cook a roast beef on Sunday, thinking it will last for another two meals. Not a chance. They'll inhale it on the Sunday - and this, after they've just had a bowl of pasta as an appetizer."
It's interesting, given the way their appetites used to work.
A bowl of pasta? Oh, they might have picked at it for 20 minutes, but it would never have disappeared.
Not so today. "You know those packaged lasagnes?" the friend inquires.
"The ones that say they'll serve a family of six? Whose family is that, I want to know? Each of my boys could eat the entire thing at one sitting."
"I hear you, sister," I say. "I think that family of six consists of four children under the age of five. All female, and none fond of pasta."
It's exasperating at times, I must admit. On the other hand, it's also good to see they now eat tomatoes, beans, cottage cheese and acorn squash - and that's 30 minutes after they've finished the roast beef.
It's good to be past the days of cajoling, and beyond the clown-faced potatoes.
There will, of course, eventually come a day when their appetites become more "normalized" and when $200 worth of groceries from Costco will last a day and a half, and maybe even two.
I know exactly when that day will come. It will be when they are buying their own food.